Gunnebo House and Gardens is one of Sweden’s primary establishments from the 18th century. It is charmingly situated between the two lakes “Stensjön” and “Rådasjön”, in the city of Mölndal, just 10 minutes south-east of Gothenburg. The landscaping and the house itself were designed by Carl Wilhelm Carlberg, a city architect from Gothenburg. The Gunnebo area has been a cultural heritage area since 2003, and the whole park is run organically and has been organically certified since 2006. Today, Gunnebo is a beautiful cultural environment with a coffeehouse, restaurant, shop and farm.
Gunnebo makes an amazing setting for any event, from weddings to birthday parties, or to simply visit and enjoy a cup of organic coffee and freshly baked bread in the wonderful gardens.
The gardens are always open for visitors and guided tours are available of the Gunnebo House and Gardens all year round, at specific times.
Patrik Sewerin is the executive chef at Gunnebo’s restaurant, which is located in what used to be the servants’ quarters, right next to the kitchen garden. We were able to get him on the phone for an interview about organic cooking, and the true uniqueness that is Gunnebo.
Patrik, please briefly describe your background.
When I was younger I always had a passion for creative design, and I studied art and ceramics in school. However, I have always had an interest for food! I grew up in a home where we always grew our own herbs and enjoyed cooking. Cooking is also a creative process, just like art and design, so it felt natural for me to take that step. I am self-taught when it comes to cooking, but I also had the good fortune to work with chefs and farmers that saw my creative potential.
What is it that’s so special about Gunnebo?
We have managed to combine the two worlds of organic food and locally produced ingredients. Our supply determines what we cook and serve to our guests and we completely adapt ourselves to the season. Also, we are true to our history and serve food that is historically accurate to time period when Gunnebo was built – which is very unique.
You cook organically – where does your produce come from?
All raw ingredients are organic and locally produced. During the summer, the herbs and vegetables from Gunnebo’s own kitchen garden provide the basis for the meals that are made.
Gunnebo has about 50 000 coffee and dinner guests per years, which makes it impossible for us to grow everything ourselves, as the property was built to accommodate a family during the 18th century. We work closely with the farmers and producers in West Sweden and adjust our menu after their supply.
Is everything you serve organic?
Yes! To serve organic food is our top priority and Gunnebo has the highest certification when it comes to being organic.
What kind of food do you typically serve?
We serve “Gunnebo food”. Organic food that is locally produced and dependent on the season. There are three main guidelines that we follow: organic sustainability, excellent craftsmanship and historic credibility. These three strategies are what make our food non-comparable to other cuisines. To sum up a usually say that our food is “cleaned out from the garden, and stumbled upon in the forest!”
Do you have a set menu?
No, the supply of organic produce, along with the season and the weather, is what determines our menu. We communicate with our growers on a daily basis, in order to plan our menus together.
How do you make sure that you work sustainably?
Apart from adapting to the season and using organic locally produced food, we also try to highlight vegetables as the star of the meal. We try to serve the meals with the meat “on the side”, instead of the other way around.
Do you offer any cooking activities for visitors?
Yes, we offer several different activities. For example, one can book a complete event with us in the kitchen where we cook together. We also do “herb walks” where everyone gets their own basket, and after we go herb picking in our garden, we cook together outside. We also offer baking classes on how to make sourdough bread and so on.
Are you open all year round?
Yes, we are only closed on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.
What kind of guests visits Gunnebo?
Our clientele has changed a lot over the past three years. Today, I would say our visitors are the “conscious type”, the ones who don’t mind going the extra mile for organic food. Although, we also have a variety of guests – everyone from tourists to companies to families.
If you could dream freely – where do you see Gunnebo in 5 years?
I hope we have expanded our type of events, to truly unique experiences for our guests. I also wish to incorporate more kinds of craftsmanship into our food, such as music and ceramics, in order to provide something genuinely creative. We want our dining experience to be a happening!
Thank you for your time Patrik and we look forward to visiting soon!